MicroXML: Who, What, Where, When, Why

John Cowan


Copyright © 2012 John Cowan. Licensed under CC-BY-SA 3.0.

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MicroXML: Who, What, Where, When, Why

Balisage: The Markup Conference 2012
August 7 - 10, 2012


MicroXML began at the end of 2010 when James Clark wanted to explore a subset of XML. MicroXML wasn't intended to replace XML, but to make something simple enough that people who ran screaming from XML would find it palatable. MicroXML is to XML as XML is to SGML: strip down the spec to the bare bones and start over, adding back as little as possible. James wrote a brief grammar and a really simple data model: everything is an element with a name, an attribute map, and ordered children, either elements or strings. In 2011, I wrote an Editor's Draft that expanded James's writeup to ten pages, corresponding to the 100 pages of XML, namespaces, infoset, xml:base, and xml:id. Now a Community Group at the W3C, chaired by Uche Ogbuji and with James and me as co-editors, is discussing exactly what MicroXML should be.